Recommended Users: Equestrians, Hikers, Mountain Bikers
Length: 1.7 miles
Sub-Area: Winchester Hills
Managing Agency: BLM
Access: Yellow Knolls Trailhead—From I-15 Exit 8, turn west on St. George Blvd. Turn at the first right on 1000 East. Turn left on Twin Lakes Drive. Travel north for 5.6 miles as Twin Lakes Drive turns into Cottonwood Road and the pavement changes to gravel. Turn right into the trailhead. Note that the upper section of Cottonwood Road is rugged and may not be suitable for small passenger cars.
Description: Winchester Trail starts just a few hundred feet south of the trailhead across the road. At 0.25 miles take the right, less well used two-track trail (should be signed) or you will end up at the edge of the mesa instead of going over its side. Follow the trail over the edge of the mesa, which steeply drops down to Black Gulch. Cross Black Gulch and pick up the two-track trail on the other side. The trail continues on a mostly gentle grade until the 1 mile point. Here it drops and climbs steeply to negotiate several drainages. Continuing following the two-track trail until reaching the third gate and stepover at the National Conservation Area (NCA) boundary. The two-track continues onto private lands.
Winchester Trail is two-track used by vehicles to maintain the major power line. The power lines can take away from the views, but can be overlooked. The expansive views south into the NCA and Snow Canyon State Park are really beautiful. So too are the views to the north of the high basalt cliff faces (no doubt hiding kit foxes in their recesses).